7 footballers who became hench after retiring including former Arsenal & Man Utd stars

Former Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester United stars are among an ever-growing list of footballers who have become incredibly hench after retiring.

While most professional footballers are at the peak of athleticism during their playing days, several of them wait until they’ve hung up their boots to get engrossed in gym life.

We’ve taken a closer look at the footballing world and have found seven former players who have become unrecognisably jacked after retiring.

Mesut Ozil

Once known for his slender frame, Ozil is almost unrecognisable in 2024. The German playmaker was best known for his vision, creativity and exquisite football IQ as strength was never really an asset he relied upon in his playing days.

In fact, there were multiple occasions throughout his Arsenal career when he was labelled as a lightweight by various fans and pundits.

To put into perspective how much he’s beefed up, his final-ever FIFA card had a strength rating of 46 out of 99. In other words, he’d struggle to fight his way out of a paper bag.

Compare that to his current physique and he’d probably be one of the strongest players on the game today. You’ve got to respect the hustle.

Fernando Torres

Since hanging up his boots in 2019, Torres must have consumed an unholy amount of protein powder. His new physique looks like it’s been chiselled by the Spanish gods and we can only respect him for that.

Back in his prime, Torres would burst past defenders with ease, but these days he’d probably fancy his chances of wrestling them to the ground.

We dread to think what he’s now capable of benching.

Ze Roberto

The former Real Madrid and Bayern Munich star looks fitter today than he did during his playing days and that’s despite being 49 years old.

Given his godly physique, the Brazilian still thinks he’s capable of cutting it at the top level today. Speaking in 2022, he told Sky Sports: “I have never stopped training.

“If I was to wear the [Manchester] City shirt today, in the physical condition I’m in, and with the way they play, I believe I could play in central midfield for them easily because it’s a team which never loses the ball.”

Tim Wiese

After spending 15 years as a professional goalkeeper, Wiese opted for a fresh challenge in 2014 as he hung up his gloves to move into WWE.

“Tim is tenacious,” Triple H told reporters in 2016. “He continues to be very vocal in his desire to prove that he has what it takes. He has shown tremendous resilience and determination to create an opportunity for himself.”

In the end, Wiese’s wrestling career was fairly short-lived, but his physique completely transformed during the years he was training with some of the world’s best wrestlers.

Funnily enough, he’s not the only professional footballer to try their luck at a different sport.

Manchester City goalkeeper Joe Hart salutes the fans following the draw against Real Madrid at Etihad Stadium, Manchester, April 2016.

READ: 17 footballers who tried other sports ft. Hart, Maldini, Batistuta, Dudek…

Rio Ferdinand

Ferdinand was no stranger to the gym during his playing days, but he became even bigger in his post-playing career. He was arguably at his biggest around 2018, several years after retiring, when he aspired to become a professional boxer.

However, despite undergoing a seriously impressive body transformation, he was denied a professional boxing license by the British Boxing Board of Control and promptly hung up the gloves.

Still, at least he’s maintained some of that physique today.

Ray Parlour

Someone needs to let us in on Parlour’s secret. The former Arsenal midfielder regularly takes to social media to record himself downing a pint or doing a shot and yet he’s still got the physique of someone who is 20 years younger than him.

A gentle reminder that Parlour is now 51 years old and still looks shredded. Fair play Ray, we all aspire to be like you one day.

Antonio Valencia

Alright, Valencia was already jacked during his playing days, but the bloke has got even bigger since hanging up his boots.

Along with throwing around dumbbells, Valencia is still active in the footballing world today. Shortly after announcing his retirement, he founded his own team in Ecuador that he now runs with his brother Eder Valencia.

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